Amazon Alexa and Fire TVs are now run by the same VP for the first time

If you’ve ever felt like there was a bit of a divide between Amazon’s Echo and Alexa products and other Amazon devices, like Fire TVs and Fire Tablets, that’s because they have always been headed by different executives within Amazon. The two groups of Amazon devices have always been more like cousins with related parents than siblings of the same parent. That has now changed, I believe for the first time, because Daniel Rausch, who is Amazon’s head of entertainment devices which includes Fire TV, Fire Tablets, Kindles, and more, has recently been put in charge of Alexa as well.

I’m not one to keep close tabs on Amazon’s executive org chart, but I do try to keep track of who is running things on the Fire TV side of the company, for obvious reasons. While reading through yesterday’s press release from TCL about its new Fire TV Smart TVs, which, incidentally, is nothing newsworthy because they have all been released for months now and covered already, I noticed that the head of Fire TV, Daniel Rausch, was quoted under the new role of “Vice President of Alexa and Entertainment Devices & Services” instead of just “VP of Entertainment Devices & Services” as he formerly held. Apparently, this change was made last month when the former VP of Alexa, Rohit Prasad, was moved into a new role to head Amazon’s artificial intelligence products. Rausch seems to have taken over Prasad’s Alexa responsibilities at that time.

While leading the Fire TV team used to be more of a separate role in Amazon, it ballooned to cover many more areas during Marc Whitten’s tenure running the team, which started in 2016. It was during his time that the group known as Amazon Entertainment Devices & Services was formed, which now includes Fire TVs, Fire Tablets, Kindles, Amazon Luna, the Amazon Appstore, and more. Rausch took over as the VP of Entertainment Devices & Services when Whitten left the company in 2021 and has been leading it ever since.

Rausch was a VP on the Alexa side of Amazon before becoming the head of the Fire TV team and Amazon’s other entertainment devices, so it’s understandable that he would inherit the Alexa side of things when Prasad changed roles. I’m not going to begin to pretend to know what being the head of so many devices entails, but now also being in charge of some, if not all, aspects of Alexa seems like a monumental role. Alexa’s place on Fire TV devices has always felt a bit tacked on. Now that there’s a single person overseeing both sides, here’s hoping it becomes a more cohesive union.

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